I have had a lot of questions about Invisalign since I started treatment. Some of them were opinions that I was happy to relay on to you guys, but others were a bit tougher to answer (cause let’s be honest, I am not the smartest cookie out there). So, I thought I would enlist the help of Dr Theo Baisi: Specialist Orthodontist at The Ortho Practice: to help answer these questions about Invisalign– and here you go!
QUESTIONS ABOUT INVISALIGN
1. What are the main benefits of straight teeth?
Putting aside the obvious aesthetic benefits, it’s important to keep in mind that straight teeth are often healthier teeth. Because straight teeth are easier to clean, they are less susceptible to oral diseases. Straight teeth also ‘fit together’ better and contribute to a healthy bite. A good bite can reduce the likelihood of premature wear (or grinding down of the teeth) and sometimes even relieve jaw pain and headaches.
2. What are the benefits of Invisalign over lingual braces (behind the teeth)?
Both options offer a more discreet teeth straightening solution than traditional braces, but there are three key advantages of Invisalign over lingual braces:
1.) Comfort – Because the brackets and wires on lingual braces sit on the back surface of the teeth, they can interfere with speech and cause discomfort when your tongue hits them as you eat and speak.
2.) No food restrictions – as with traditional braces, the decision to use lingual braces will mean restrictions on the types of foods you can eat.
3.) Hygiene – Oral hygiene is a critical component of orthodontic treatment. Patients need to take care when cleaning brackets and wires on the back of the teeth just as they would if they were on the front. The trouble is that this can sometimes be difficult when you can’t see them. Invisalign is completely removable so you can brush and floss as usual.
3. Why do you need attachments on your teeth?
Attachments are small, tooth coloured (or translucent) ‘bumps’ that are sometimes placed on specific teeth to assist with certain tooth movements. For example if you have a tooth that needs to be rotated, the attachment gives the aligner something to grab onto to help it twist faster. Your doctor will discuss the timing and placement of your attachments as they relate to your treatment plan before you commence treatment. If you really don’t want any on your front teeth, be sure to tell your doctor this when they are developing your treatment plan.
4. Is it easy to break the aligners?
Invisalign aligners are made from strong, medical grade plastic. Whilst they’re not impossible to break, it’s not likely that they will. They are sturdy and flexible – they actually bend more than you may think!
5. After you have finished Invisalign, how do you stop my teeth from moving again?
Few people are aware that your teeth actually keep moving throughout your lifetime. So as with any orthodontic treatment, retention is crucial. There are a few options available to patients to hold teeth in their desired position- these include a permanent lingual wire behind the teeth or Invisalign Vivera retainers, which are worn at night and similar to the aligners themselves, but slightly thicker and stronger.
One thing that I found interesting about the whole ‘Invisalign story’ is technology that goes into every patients treatment. Not only is it advanced, but it is all about mass custimsation – something not many companies are able to pull together.
Check out this video for more information on the technology that goes on behind Invisalign. I dare you to not be in awe!
Are you on an invisalign journey? Are you thinking about it?